A couple of quick sketches to demonstrate the effect of the recent rule change to F1 Qualifying…
First, session utilisation for qualifying during last year’s 2015 Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix :
Cars are on track throughout qualifying with many drivers completing two stints per session, with two or three laps per stint in the first part of qualifying.
Here’s what qualifying look like this year:
One or two single lap stints, in the main, in Q1 and single lap, single run outings in Q2. Q3 also saw half the runners only completing a single stint.
Earlier in the year, when planning for the new qualifying format was to-ing an fro-ing, Bernie Ecclestone made a comment that changes would not be possible because “his technical team cannot prepare the software and graphics in time”.
In part, that’s because the whole timing thing is a mess. The FIA time sheets for qualifying yesterday included lap times that fell outside the rolling guillotine. My qualifying session cut-off time code doesn’t really work any more because it doesn’t factor in the rolling cut-off time, but what it does show is that a time recorded on the time sheet for Perez would have made the cut-off, if Perez hadn’t completed the lap too late.
Although recorded later in the session, Hulkenberg’s time was allowed, because he hadn’t yet been excluded.
To the extent that the new qualifying format was supposed to mix-up the grid, this sort of worked – Perez will be starting lower down the grid than he would have under last year’s qualifying format.